Sept. 26, 2012
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - The University of Southern Mississippi M-Club Alumni Association will formally induct its Class of 2012 on Friday, Sept. 28, at the Southern Oaks House and Gardens located at 1246 Richburg Road. The social begins at 6 p.m., followed by the induction ceremony at 7 p.m.
The M-Club is the University's association of former athletic letter winners and consists of former players, coaches, trainers, managers and cheerleaders.
The 2012 Hall of Fame inductees include Bill Breene (Baseball, 1972-75), Bobby Hamilton (Football 1990-93), James Henry (Football (1986-88), Sharon Montgomery-Nelson (Volleyball, 1985-88), Kenny Siler (Men's Basketball, 1983-87), Ricky Sutherland (1973-76), John White (Men's Basketball 1984-88), and Tim Yelverton (Men's Golf, 1999-2002).
Bill Breene (Baseball, 1972-75)
Bill Breene was a four-year letterman for the Golden Eagles under Coach Pete Taylor from 1972 to 1975, where he was also a four-year starter as a third baseman. Breene is still considered to be one of the most talented infielders to have ever played for the Golden Eagles and was a part of big wins in his career over Ole Miss, Alabama and Mississippi State. Following his playing career at Southern Miss he served as an assistant coach under Taylor. When after a 20-year absence, the University of Buffalo reinstated baseball as a varsity sport in November of 1988 Breene became the school's head coach and guided the program through its early days as a Division I independent and into its membership in the mid-American Conference. Breene's guidance and enthusiasm and his philosophy of "work hard in class, get your degree and enjoy the terrific experience that is college baseball" paid huge dividends as the program grew and continues to grow under his leadership.
Bobby Hamilton (Defensive Lineman, 1990-1993)
Hamilton was a four-year letterman at defensive end for the Golden Eagles from 1990-to-1993. As a freshman he recorded 24 tackles a tackle for a loss and a quarterback sack. As a sophomore he had 39 tackles, a tackle for a loss and four quarterback sacks. As a junior he recorded 46 tackles, two tackles for losses and five quarterback sacks and returned an interception 18 yards for a touchdown against Alabama. As a senior he had 66 tackles, 14 tackles for losses and eight quarterback sacks. He finished his career with 175 tackles, 16 tackles for losses and 18 quarterback sacks. He was a 1st team all-South Independent selection (Associated Press) in 1993 and a 2nd team all-South Independent selection in 1992. He played professionally with the Seattle Seahawks (1994), New York Jets (1997-1999) and the New England Patriots (2000-2003), Oakland Raiders (2004-2005), New York Jets (2007) and Cleveland Browns (2008). He also a part of two Super Bowl championships with New England.
James Henry (Defensive Back/Punt Returner, 1986-1988)
Henry was a three-year letterman for the Golden Eagles from 1986 to 1988 and started at cornerback in 1988. He has a second team all-South Independent selection in 1988 and First-Team All-American by Sporting News as a punt returner. As a freshman (1986) he had 33 tackles and an interception. In 1987 had 24 tackles and an interception and returned 41 punts for a 13.6 yard average and four touchdowns. In 1988 had 56 tackles and an interception and returned 23 punts for a 13.4 yard average and two touchdowns. As a senior established a NCAA record with four punts returned for touchdowns in three-consecutive games in 1987. He had two punt returns for TDs in the 1988 Independence Bowl. He was named the Offensive and Defensive MVP of the 1988 Independence Bowl. He was a member of the Team of the Century. He owns the school record for most punt returns for touchdowns with six. He finished with 865 punt return yards. He also had 22 kickoff returns for 416 yards for an 18.9 yard average. He played in the 1989 Senior Bowl. He was taken in fourth round of the 1989 NFL draft by the Seattle Seahawks.
Sharon Montgomery-Nelson (Posthmous Volleyball, 1985-1988)
Montgomery was four-year letterwinner and starter for the Golden Eagles from 1985 to 1988. She was as considered one of the squad's most talented players in the early days of Lady Eagle volleyball. She was a multi-talented player who was able to help the team win in an assortment of ways. For her impact on the volleyball program, the Sharon Montgomery-Nelson Award is given annually to the player befitting the character, fire, passion and competitive nature as the team's most valuable player. She finished her career with 1,224 kills and 1,380 digs. She was the first Golden Eagle ever to receive all-conference honors when she earned All-Metro Conference honors in 1988. She also was named Metro all-tournament team in 1985 as a freshman. She still ranks as one of the top players in the history of the program as she ranks in the top 10 in kills, attempts, kills per set, attack percentage, service aces, digs, digs per set and points.
Kenny Siler (Basketball, 1983-1987)
Siler was a four-year letterman and starter at point guard from 1983 to 1987. He is recognized as one of the best defensive players and offensive playmakers for the Golden Eagles. As a freshman, he started 11 of 25 games, averaging 5.7 points per game with 46 assists and 21 steals. In 1984-85, he averaged 9.0 points per game with 120 rebounds, 97 assists and 35 steals. In 1985-86, he averaged 14.6 points per game while shooting 53.7 percent from the field. He also had 126 rebounds, 101 assists and 52 steals. As a senior in 1986-87, Siler averaged 11.3 points per game with 124 rebounds, 89 assists and 28 steals. He helped to lead the Golden Eagles to the NIT Championship. He finished career with 100 starts in 116 games, averaging 10.4 points, 3.6 rebounds with 333 assists, 48 blocked shots and 136 steals. He shot 50.1 percent from the floor and 73.0 percent from the foul line.
Ricky Sutherland (Baseball, 1973-1976)
Sutherland was an outstanding four-year letterman for Coach Pete Taylor as a shortstop. He was recognized as one of the best defensive shortstops in school history. As a sophomore shortstop, he hit .283 with four home runs, 11 RBI and led the team in stolen bases with seven. As a junior, he led the team in hitting with a .320 average, driving in 14 runs and leading the team in doubles with seven and stolen bases with four. As a senior he hit .278 with a home run and 17 RBI. He also had five doubles and led the team with five triples. For his career, he collected 112 hits, 17 doubles, seven triples and five home runs and 47 RBI while batting .273. Sutherland Signed a free agent contract and played one season with the Chicago White Sox.
John White (Basketball, 1984-1988)
White was a four-year letterman and a three-year starter for the Golden Eagles from 1984-to-1988. He helped Southern Miss win the1987 NIT Championship. He currently ranks 17th on the all-time scoring list with 1,331 points. He scored a career-high 41 points against Virginia Tech, the second best single game performance. White was a player that performed his best in pressure situations and hit several game winning or game tying shots in his career. He was a tremendous defensive player as well who usually drew the assignment of guarding the other team's top scorer. At 6-6, he had the ability and talent to play every position on the court and be effective both inside and from the perimeter. He played several season overseas in Europe following his career at Southern Miss.
Tim Yelverton (Men's Golf, 1999-2002)
Yelverton was a four-year letterwinner. He was one of only four players to play in the NCAA Individual Tournament. He ranks ninth all-time in career stroke average at 74.7. He also ranks fifth in rounds played with 115. Yelverton owns the second best stroke average in a season at 72.7. He holds the school record for most rounds at par or better in a season. He also has the school record for the most top 10 finishes in a season, top 20 finishes in a season and has the most career top 10 finishes. He captured two tournament titles as a senior. He is the only player to earn two first-team all-conference honors. He also was named to the all-tournament team.